Five Great Results With Customize Rapid Prototyping Solutions
With the ever-increasing need of creating and improving products, the demand for prototypes has also risen. Prototypes help in design valuation, certification, crowdfunding campaigns, providing proofs-of-concept, and bridging to full-scale production. If you are in search of high-quality rapid prototypes, we at Creatingway offer 5 mature and well-established processes. These processes include:
- CNC machining
- Polyurethane Vacuum Casting
- SLA 3D Printing
- SLS 3D Printing
- Injection Molding
Here Is An Extensive Insight Into These Rapid Prototyping Solutions
CNC Machining Process
CNC machining is a subtractive method of manufacturing that we use in an array of projects. With CNC machining we are able to automate the entire production management system. This allows us to increase efficiency across the whole production system and make consistent product quality.
CNC machines run on computer CAD software that regulates the movement of machinery. By automating the production process, we decrease the need for labor. CNC machining processes like CNC turning, lathes and CNC drilling often achieve better results than traditional production methods. We can also get better quality and speed with CNC machines unlike manual machining as they do not get tired or break down.
Manual CNC machines come with a certain risk to them as things can go sideways for the operator. A mistake while operating the machine or a lack of focus by an individual may end up being harmful to the equipment and individual. CNC machining is much safer and does not always need supervision
If you want strong mechanical prototype parts that fully work, then consider CNC machining. This is since it is fully functional and has precise tolerances. CNC machining is, however, not ideal for deep cavities and thin-walled parts. We prefer using vacuum casting in rapid prototyping solutions for these parts.
Polyurethane Vacuum Casting
In vacuum casting, we use a master pattern in modeling the desired finished part. We can make a master pattern in any solid material such as a plastic 3D printed part. We suspend the master pattern in an empty casting box and fill it with liquid silicone. After the silicone hardens, we cut it open and remove the patter. This leaves behind a hollow cavity that we can refill with resin to rapidly create prototype parts.
Cast urethane, is one of the best ways to make near-production quality plastic prototypes. We achieve this without needing to invest in costly metal tools. The resins come in an array of hardness that allows us to make soft rubber shapes. CNC machining does not allow us to achieve this. The vacuum cast molds can last for up to 20 copies. This makes it a great way to make enclosures and other hollow parts in small batches. The part’s surface texture is consistent with the original. We can thus sand, paint, and subject the part to machining when trying to achieve more finishing options.
SLA 3D Printing
Stereolithography is a form of 3D printing that helps us create prototypes, models, patterns, and production parts. The process achieves this using photochemical processes. Light enables the layer-by-layer fusion of chemical oligomers and monomers by cross-linking to form polymers.
In SLA, we use a vat of photosensitive resin in a chamber with a moveable build platform. We project thousands of separate 2D slices of a 3D CAD model with UV light into the vat during the process. As we slowly raise the platform, there is selective layer by layer curing to form the finished part.
SLA serves as a fast and versatile rapid prototyping option. There are plenty of resin options to choose from depending on the different mechanical cosmetic features. The resin grades can be standard, dental/medical, or engineering. We can even add aluminum powder or glass fibers for greater strength. The end product has an excellent surface finish, but the part still needs washing. We then cure it a second time to achieve optimum stability and strength.
SLS 3D Printing
SLS 3D printing is a form of powder bed fusion. The process uses a powder substrate where a roller smoothens and compresses the top surface. In SLS, we use a laser to fuse 2D layers. In an alternate option, we fully sinter the printed prototype in an infrared oven.
SLS 3D printing offers an array of advantages. Firstly, the parts are self-supporting, so we do not need extra features as support. Also, we can use the entire build volume of the chamber for optimum efficiency. In addition, with SLS, we can mix up to 75% of the powder from the previous builds with the original powder. This enables us to cut costs and save on raw materials.
Plastic Injection Molding
Our plastic injection molding process allows us to create custom rapid prototypes and finished products. We use the aluminum mold for cost-efficient tooling and quick manufacturing cycles. We offer two injection molding service options. These are prototyping and on-demand production. Each process has its pros depending on the project’s needs.
At Creatingway, we use the technology-driven process to take full advantage of industrial automation. The CAD model gets into the production floor where the milling begins. We fabricate the molds from aluminum and not steel. It thus enables faster and more cost-efficient tooling.
Creatingway offers the finest CNC machining, vacuum casting, 3D printing, and injection molding services for your rapid prototyping needs. Contact us today and start your next project.
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